Due to popular demand, we have added a new performance of The Niceties
on Saturday, July 24 at 3pm.
Don’t miss your chance to see this performance that the Westfield News called a “shocker in the best sense” and “a theatrical explosion.”
There are VERY LIMITED tickets available for
Friday, August 23 at 7:30 and Saturday. August 24 at 7:30pm.
All other shows are SOLD OUT.
Box office phone hours are
Tuesday through Saturday from 11am to 3pm
(413) 354-7771



The Niceties
Written by Eleanor Burgess
Directed by Christina Franklin
July 14 – 25

Zoe, a Black student at an elite liberal arts college, is called into her white professor’s office to discuss her paper about slavery’s effect on the American Revolution. What begins as a polite clash in perspectives explodes into an urgent debate about race, history, and power.

The Washington Post calls The Niceties “a barnburner of a play,” and “one of the best plays I’ve seen about who gets to tell the story of America, and how.”

Sponsored by:
Wil Hastings
Emily Wojcik and Michael Thurston


Starring Andrea Gallo as Janine and Stephanie Everett as Zoe.

Andrea Gallo

Stephanie Everett


Scenic Design by Juliana von Haubrich

Costume Design by Charles Schoonmaker

Lighting Design by Lara Dubin

Sound Design by James McNamara

Stage Managed by Leslie Sears



Conflict at Yale University and the Writing of The Niceties

by Katherine Heyman, Chester Theatre Company intern

Eleanor Burgess’s The Niceties touches on a number of conflicts present on college campuses across the United States today: ones that are generational, racial, political, and class-based. While she was a student at Yale, Burgess was present for an incident which shook campus life, incited debates across the nation, and inspired Burgess to write her play, which The New York Times calleda bristling, provocative debate play about race and privilege in the United States.”



Good theatre has this amazing power to inform and educate while simultaneously entertaining its audience… It’s the interplay of the two actors, Andrea Gallo and Stephanie Everett, that light the fireworks. This is good theatre.”
Mark Auerbach in the Westfield News

“These two women battle, from diverse points of view, over the use of words, of ideas, and of convictions in Chester Theatre’s dynamic presentation… I urge you to see it if thought-theater is what you like. Provocative adult plays aren’t for everyone, but this one is something different.”
J. Peter Bergman in Berkshire Edge

“…dynamic, unsettling, beautifully acted and directed.”–Macey Levin in Berkshire On Stage

“Both actresses have successfully mined the humanity of their characters.”–Barbara Waldinger in Berkshire On Stage

“This is the play I imagined through a year and a half of quarantine that I wanted to see when we re-emerged into the world.”–Patrick White in Nippertown

“…this production is a tour de force, an engrossing, exciting, thought-provoking piece of theater.”--Bess Hochstein, Splash Magazines